Truck traffic is being unblocked on Ukraine's border with Poland
On Monday, December 11, truck traffic was unblocked at the Polish-Ukrainian border through the Jagodzin-Dorohusk checkpoint
This was announced by Deputy Prime Minister for Reconstruction, Minister of Community Development, Territories and Infrastructure Oleksandr Kubrakov.
It is noted that since 14:00, stable truck traffic has been restored at the checkpoint.
Fifteen vehicles have crossed into Ukraine and are at the checkpoint. In addition, 25 trucks are being cleared to head towards Poland.
Kubrakov reminded that the blocking of the largest cargo checkpoint on the Ukrainian-Polish border lasted more than a month.
"During this time, the team of the Ministry and the Embassy (of Ukraine - ed.) was literally dealing with the issue of unblocking every day. We held dozens of meetings and negotiations at all possible levels. It was a difficult job, but it is not over yet. The border must be fully unblocked, and further blockages will not be allowed," the Minister emphasized.
Strikes on the border between Poland and Ukraine
Strikes have erupted on the Poland-Ukraine border due to increased competition following the opening of international transportation between Ukraine and EU nations. To address this, the Ministry for Communities, Territories and Infrastructure Development initiated talks with Poland and the European Commission.
Responding to the potential border blockage, the State Border Guard Service provided comments, and Ukraine formally communicated its concerns to Poland regarding the planned strike by Polish carriers at the Ukrainian-Polish border.
On November 6, Polish carriers initiated a strike at the border. The Ministry of Infrastructure noted that no official demands had been submitted by the Polish carriers to Kyiv.
By the evening of November 7, Polish carriers had fully halted the movement of cargo vehicles at two border checkpoints with Ukraine.
Subsequently, it was revealed that trucks are facing up to a 90-hour wait to enter Ukraine.
On November 9, a meeting of government officials and carriers blocking the border with Ukraine took place in Poland, but it concluded without any resolution. Simultaneously, the lines of trucks are growing longer. Consequently, Ukraine has suggested to the Polish authorities the initiation of lanes for empty trucks and is currently awaiting their response.
On November 15, trilateral talks with Poland and the European Commission on unblocking the crossing points took place, but they did not yield any results. Instead, the European Commission may initiate measures against Poland if the authorities do not resolve the issue of carriers blocking checkpoints on the border with Ukraine.
Polish carriers have promised to tighten the blockade on the border with Ukraine. In addition, customs officers have begun to record an increase in truck queues in the Slovak direction.
Ukraine and Poland are preparing claims for damages caused by the blockade of border crossing points due to the rally of Polish carriers. In addition, it has been reported that Polish carriers are not allowing humanitarian aid and dangerous goods to pass through.
According to Volodymyr Balin, vice president of the Association of International Road Carriers, Polish carriers are violating the terms of the strike, which could help to get it called off. At the same time, the Ukrainian economy has already suffered losses of more than €400 million.
Meanwhile, the Polish government has called on Ukraine to cancel the e-queue registration for empty trucks. Poland’s Minister of Agriculture also met with the protesters and offered them a compromise solution.
On December 1, the blocked Ukrainian drivers at the Polish border held talks with the consul. On December 4, the Uhryniv-Dolhobyczów border crossing point opened to empty trucks.
As a result of the protesters' blocking of the border with Ukraine, exports through these checkpoints decreased by 40%, and the state budget of Ukraine lost UAH 9.3 billion due to a shortfall in customs payments.
Later it became known that the trucks blocked on the border with Poland would be returned to Ukraine by rail. On the evening of December 7, Ukrainian Railways sent the first container train with trucks to Poland, consisting of 23 platforms with 13 loaded tractors and semi-trailers.